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Yield-Link® Engagement Process (Steps 1, 2 and 3)

Process Flow

Engagement Process Flow

Contact Simpson Strong-Tie for support for your structural steel project.

To streamline the structural analysis and connection design using the Simpson Strong-Tie steel moment frame Yield-Link® moment connection, we have created the following tools and design guide to assist the designers.

Step 1: Design Software

A. For Computers and Structures, Inc. (CSI) products, we have created plugins that will work directly with ETABS and SAP2000.

Screen Shot of Yield Link Connection_ETABS v2.1

ETABS/SAP2000 Plugin User Interface

The ETABS/SAP2000 plugin will automatically assign rotational springs to the ends of each beam when the user selects a beam size and Yield-Link size. After all the initial checks for beam flange thickness, beam flange width and Yield-Link yielding length are satisfied, the user can run the frame analysis and the plugin will automatically calculate the Beam and Link Check, Column Check, Shear Tab Check and show a Drift Summary. Beam and Column Design Check can also be performed and summarized under the Member Design tabs. When the frame designs are finalized, the user has the option to export all frame elevations in a DXF format. These frame elevations can then be used in the drawing set for documentation purposes. Contact Simpson Strong-Tie for other design tools.

B. For non-CSI software users, we have developed the Yield-Link Moment Connection Modeling Guide (F-L-SMFYLCMG) and its companion Yield-Link Moment Connection Design Tool in Excel.

The Connection Modeling Guide outlines different modeling techniques a user can incorporate to model the Yield-Link moment connections in your Analysis and Design Software. It gives step-by-step processes of how a user can model a Yield-Link moment connection in moment frames so the drift of the moment frames can be captured with the correct stiffness of the Yield-Link moment connections. The modeling guide also offers information on how to extract the moment to calculate the link axial forces for design and a Preliminary Yield-Link Selection Chart based on the design moments.

Connection Modeling Guide
Yield-Link Design Aid Chart
Yield-Link Connection Modeling Guide Cover

The companion Yield-Link Moment Connection Design Tool in Excel can assist users in Yield-Link moment connection design. It has the ability to perform initial frame drift check, initial link size check and all the Beam and Link Check, Column Check and Shear Tab Check similar to the ETABS/SAP2000 plugin. This Excel tool can also export the frame models to RISA-3D format so the user can perform the final frame design (drift check, link strength check, beam-and-column design check). Similar to the ETABS/SAP2000 plugin, when design is finished, the User can export frame elevations with all the details required for construction.

Yield-Link® Moment Connection Design Tool in Excel

User Interface for Yield-Link Excel Tool
RISA-3D Model Exported from Excel Tool
RISA-3D Model Exported from Excel Tool

Look for Yield-Link moment connection in the upcoming release for RAM-Steel and RISA-3D.

RAM-Steel and RISA-3D.

Step 2: CAD/BIM

In addition to the frame elevation drawings the design software can generate, Simpson Strong-Tie also created Revit families for our Yield-Link moment connections to help facilitate coordination between the different trades.

Revit Families for our Yield-Link® Moment Connections

The Revit families can be imported into a typical project and added to the beam-to-column connections. The user can match the frame elevations for the location of the links and export a schedule to show the link sizes and quantities.

Revit Families can be Imported Into a Typical Project and Added to the Beam-to-Column Connections

Step 3: Structural Drawings

To assist engineers with specifying the designed frames, frame elevation drawing DXFs can be generated from the design tools. These elevation drawings include the beam and column sizes and Yield-Link moment connection sizes, including the shear tab. The CAD drawing includes shear tab thickness, shear tab bolt size and quantity, stiffener plate thickness (if required) and doubler plate thickness (if required) directly from design file. All this will help engineers ensure that their correct moment frame information is included in the structural drawings so the fabricator can detail and fabricate the moment frame correctly. It will also provide general contractors information on the frames for bid.

Frame Elevation Drawing DXFs
CAD Drawing Legend